Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Arts & Crafts time...

The most expensive implement of my winter riding apparel is my pair of Mukluks. For those who are not of Northern Minnesota/North America, Mukluks are insulated high-top moccasins originated by our aboriginal folks. Mine are a pair of moose hide with wool felt liners made by Mrs (ex) Steeger from Ely, Minnesota. These are windproof, waterproof (when treated) and really, really warm.

I've had mine for about a decade and I've replaced the sole of them once already a couple of years ago. This year, I've noticed that they aren't as insulating from the ground as they had been, so it's time to re-sole them. Since recycling is the new Black, I'm taking some old wool sweaters and felting them to be re-used as insulation for other things. One of those things is this...

Felting wool consists of disregarding the instructions on the tag and cooking wool things in hot water and drying them in hot air. Sure, you can't wear the sweater anymore, but now the dwarf-wrap is a tightly bound thick piece of material to be used in our arts and crafts project. Washing a non-washable 100% wool sweater in hot water and drying it at high heat will shrink the daylights out of it and give you something unwearable, but something infinitely craftable. Me darlin' Mrs shrunk down a coupla old sweaters that were full of holes and my first project is to re-sole my mukluks.

Take a piece of felted wool, and measure your insert by tracing around it with a sharp knife. Finish the cuts with a pair of scissors and stuff that piece into your old boots, voilà, new soles. Wasn't that easy kids? If you learn to sew, you can make whole new inserts for your snowmobile boots or mukluks from old sweaters.

I'm learning to sew again. No, it's not girly, it's constructing things, you dink. Deal with it.

Soon, (when I learn how) I'll teach you how to make a great winter cycling hat from old sweaters. But we'll have to learn how to sew, won't we? Things that need insulation when biking are best insulated with wool, right? Why not take cheap wool and make new fabric from it and make fabulous things with it, yes?

Yes.

4 comments:

Snakebite said...

That's pretty cool! Or warm, or neat!

iMotor said...

Well aren't you just Mr. Ricky Home Ecy (the male equivalent of Becky Home Ecy)

rlove said...

Felting...never heard of that one before, but it seems like a very good idea.

Pete said...

I knew I should have paid more attention in home ec. Why didn't they have us do cool stuff like this, instead of making a pillow?